Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 31 August 2022
Current Affairs for BANK, IBPS Exams - 31 August 2022
Jharkhand House Speaker concludes anti-defection proceedings against Marandi
Jharkhand assembly Speaker RabindraNathMahto on Tuesday concluded anti-defection proceedings related to Opposition BharatiyaJanata Party (BJP) leader and former chief minister BabulalMarandi and reserved the judgment. People aware of the matter said Marandi could lose his assembly membership and the ruling in this regard may come early.
The development comes amid political uncertainty following the Election Commission of India (ECI)’s ostensible recommendation for chief minister HemantSoren’s disqualification as an assembly member. The ruling Jharkhand MuktiMorcha (JMM)-led coalition government has accused the BJP of trying to pull down the government. Marandi is seen as the front runner for the chief ministerial post.
JMM has 30 lawmakers and its allies Congress 18, and the RashtriyaJanata Dal one. The BJP has 26 lawmakers. The ruling alliance lawmakers were shifted to Raipur in Congress-ruled Chhattisgarh on Tuesday amid the political uncertainty.
“One aspect of the issue [hearing of complaint against Marandi] has been completed. Would continue hearing other complaints on September 1 [Thursday],” Mahto said.
RN Sahay, Marandi’s lawyer, said Mahto turned down his plea to examine witnesses. He added he sought to prove Marandi’s Jharkhand VikasMorcha (Prajatantrik) was lawfully merged with the BJP as per provisions laid down under the anti-defection law.
Four lawmakers later filed complaints against Marandi and the speaker withdrew the suomotu proceedings. Marandi later started proceedings as per the complaints. The BJP also sought the disqualification of Tirkey and Yadav. Tirkey was later disqualified in April after being sentenced for corruption.
In May, Mahto rejected Marandi’s plea to drop anti-defection charges against him and cancel proceedings on the grounds that they were filed late.
Sahay argued the petitions against Marandi were not maintainable as they were filed 10 months after the merger and the petitions should be dismissed. He said they were to be filed within 45 days under the Representation of the People Act.
US Army grounds workhorse Chinook helicopter after engine fires
The US Army has grounded its fleet of workhorse H-47 Chinook helicopters, an icon of US wars from Vietnam to the Middle East, after several experienced engine fires, the Army said Tuesday.
The move will leave some 400 of the well-armed, heavy-duty Chinooks out of service owing to what engine-maker Honeywell described as "suspect O-rings" used in some of the aircraft that did not meet its specifications.
"The Army has identified the root cause of fuel leaks that caused a small number of engine fires among an isolated number of H-47 helicopters and is implementing corrective measures to resolve this issue," said Army spokeswoman Cynthia Smith.
"While no deaths or injuries occurred, the Army temporarily grounded the H-47 fleet out of an abundance of caution, until those corrective actions are complete," she said in a statement.
The Chinooks, originally known as the CH-47 and in service across the US armed forces as well as in Britain and nearly 20 other countries, are made by Boeing.
With two rotors, the helicopters can carry heavy loads and are well-armed for combat situations.
They are frequently used in disaster relief missions as well.
Earlier this year Germany announced it would buy 60 of the aircraft.
Argentina and the Philippines are also lined up to buy some instead of Russian-made helicopters.
Honeywell said it was not responsible for the problematic O-rings but did not identify where they were manufactured or who installed them.
"The US Army and Honeywell were able to validate that none of the questionable O-rings originated or were part of any Honeywell production or Honeywell-overhauled engines," the company said.
RBI launches key household surveys to get inputs for monetary policy
Reserve Bank of India on Tuesday launched the next round of household surveys to capture inflation expectations and consumer confidence.
The results of the survey provide useful inputs for monetary policy, the central bank said.
The September 2022 round of Inflation Expectations Survey of Households (IESH) aims at capturing subjective assessments on price movements and inflation, based on their individual consumption baskets, across 19 cities.
The IESH seeks qualitative responses from households on price changes in the three months ahead as well as in the one-year ahead period and quantitative responses on current, three months ahead and one year ahead inflation rates.
The households to be covered under the survey in the cities include Ahmedabad, Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Guwahati, Jammu, Kolkata, and Thiruvananthapuram.
Consumer Confidence Survey (CCS) to be conducted in 19 cities seeks qualitative responses from households, regarding their sentiments on general economic situation, employment scenario, price level, households' income and spending.
The next meeting of the RBI's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is scheduled during September 28-30.
Rupee surges to end at 79.46 vs dollar as MSCI rebalancing spurs inflows
The rupee notched up hefty gains versus the dollar on Tuesday as the MSCI’s quarterly index rebalancing resulted in a gush of inflows into Indian markets, dealers said.
The aggressive defence of the rupee by the Reserve Bank of India in the face of dollar strength on Monday also bolstered the currency on Tuesday, as those betting against it rushed to square off those bets, dealers said.
Government bonds also strengthened sharply as some banks involved in executing HDFC Ltd’s planned debt sale worth a total of Rs 10,000 crore managed their exposure by purchasing sovereign debt, dealers said.
The rupee settled at 79.46 per dollar versus the previous close of 79.97. The yield on the 10-year benchmark government bond slid six basis points to close at 7.19 per cent on Tuesday. Bond prices and yields move inversely.
“The Indian rupee is the biggest gainer in Asia today on the back of inflows related to MSCI’s quarterly index rebalancing. Bond inflows with custodian banks also seen to have helped the rupee. On the equities front for the month of August, we have seen inflows of around $6 billion, while overseas investors have also turned net buyers in debt segment after January 2022,” KunalSodhani, Vice President, Global Trading Centre, Shinhan Bank said.
::Science and tech::
After postponing Artemis 1 launch, NASA to make second attempt on 03-09-2022
NASA will make a second attempt to launch its Artemis 1 mission, within a 2-hour window on September 3, the US space agency announced on Tuesday (local time).
The window will open at 2:17pm EDT (11:47pm IST) on the new launch date, it added.
Meanwhile, the official Twitter handle of Artemis 1 said, "Teams have reviewed the data from Monday's launch attempt of the #Artemis I mission and are moving forward with a second launch attempt on Sat., Sept. 3, with a two-hour launch window starting at 2:17 p.m. EDT.
NASA scientists will try to blast off the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket – the mission's carrier vehicle – from the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
The launch of Artemis 1 on the initial date – August 29 – was postponed as the teams could not get the rocket's engines to the proper temperature range required to start the engines at liftoff, and ultimately ran out of time in the launch window, also of 2 hours, to continue.
The mission management team met a day later to review the data collected from the first attempt, and to discuss the next course of action, a NASA press release said.
Artemis 1 represents the first of NASA's several upcoming and ‘increasingly complex’ missions, all under its Artemis programme, which aims to build a ‘long-term human presence at the Moon for decades to come’.
Under this, the agency will send the first woman and first person of colour to the lunar surface, for a period of six weeks, or, specifically, 42 days, 3 hours and 20 minutes.
Venus Williams out of US Open in first round for second time
The welcome and support for Venus Williams in Arthur Ashe Stadium on Tuesday afternoon were not the same as they were for her sister, Serena, a night earlier. Nor was the result.
Venus, who turned 42 in June, has not made any pronouncements about her future in tennis, unlike her younger sibling, and while she has been successful and influential, too — a seven-time Grand Slam champion; a Black woman in a predominantly white sport — the fanfare and attention are not the same.
Playing in front of thousands of empty blue seats in an arena quite silent at the start, although growing louder later, Venus bowed out in the first round of the U.S. Open for the second consecutive appearance, losing 6-1, 7-6 (5) to Alison Van Uytvanck.
“She means so much to female tennis. Tennis, in general,” Van Uytvanck said. “She’s a legend.”
This was the 23rd trip to Flushing Meadows for Venus, who made it to the final in 1997 as a teen then won the trophy in 2000 and 2001, and her record 91st time participating in a major tournament.